September 22, 2023

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Mysterious Signals: Data from a 45-Year-Old Probe Traveling Outside the Solar System Piques the Curiosity of NASA Scientists |  Science

Mysterious Signals: Data from a 45-Year-Old Probe Traveling Outside the Solar System Piques the Curiosity of NASA Scientists | Science

Voyager 1 spacecraft from NASAinterests the scientists of the American Space Organization.

This is because Voyager, It is the furthest human body ever released from the earthhas a problem with the spatial guidance system which, according to the scientists, It doesn’t really reflect what’s happening to her.

according to NASAAnd Although the equipment is operating normallyreceiving and executing commands from the organization, data from the Attitude and Expression Control System (AACS) They point to the agency’s computer information that appears to be “randomly generated” or which do not reflect “any potential situation in which AACS could be”.

Susan Dodd, Voyager 1 and 2 project manager at Jet Propulsion Laboratory at NASAin the current situation.

It is the precise performance of the AACS system that also ensures the correct positioning of the Voyager antenna, which is always pointed towards the Earth. Because Voyager 1’s signal did not weaken, Voyager 1 engineers NASA We think the antenna is still in its normal orientation.

But the probe is outside the solar system, in the so-called interstellar space (23.3 billion km from us), and because of this, it takes scientists about two days to send a message to Voyager 1 and get a response from it. come back.

“The spacecraft is about 45 years old, which is far beyond what the mission designers expected. We are also in interstellar space – a highly radioactive environment that has never been a probe. So we have some big challenges for the engineering team. But I think if there is a way to solve AACS problem, our team will figure it out.”

The specialist also does not exclude that the JPL team may not find the cause of the deviation, but guarantees that if this occurs, adjustments can be made.

Now, if the origin of the mystery is discovered, the NASA Ensures that the problem can be corrected through changes to the device’s software or through the use of its redundant systems.

John Cassani, Voyager Project Manager, holds an American flag attached to Voyager 2. The probes also carry phonograph discs with images depicting life on Earth. Image: NASA

The probe was launched into space in 1977, along with Voyager 2’s “twin” (which is operating smoothly), and aims to collect data from interstellar space.

to me NASAthis information will provide valuable insights into the functioning of the heliosphere, the barrier the sun creates around the planets in our solar system.